GPW: NBC Experience Store

August 24, 2011 at 10:13 am Project of the Week: 8/15/11
NBC Experience Store
New York, NY, USA
135 sf. G

Year: 2010
Owner: NBC
New York, NY, USA
Building Type: Commercial
Type: Living Wall
System: Single Source Provider
Size: 135 sq.ft.
Slope: 100%
Access: Accessible, Open to Public

Project Description & Details

The NBC Experience Store at Rockefeller Center project was developed as a piece for NBC’s “Green is Universal” week 2010, resulting in a beautiful and lush indoor wall in the heart of New York City. A secondary green initiative included a temporary window display to educate the public on green farming with vertical living walls as well as to show the portability of the Mobile Edible Wall Unit (MEWU), used as a teaching tool in classrooms and as part of the Green Living Technologies International Food Factory.

The project received a lot of attention upon the introduction of the installation team – they were not only from the Bronx, they were also GLTi’s youngest certified installers in the world. As part of the GLTi educational curriculum, this Discovery High School team of interns is part of the degree track program getting paid to implement the skills they learned in the classroom. The interior greenwall utilizes the patented 24″x24″x4″ Green Living Wall Panels consisting of low light indoor plants. The grow lights use only 7W of electricity and the bulbs last over 50,000 hours, making the lighting unit a great low cost option.

Designers/Manufacturers of Record

Greenwall System: Green Living Technologies International (GLTi)
Plant Grower: Parker Plantscapes
Installation: Discovery High School Students
Discovery High School Teacher/Administrator: Steve Ritz

Additional Info

NBC’s Green is Universal program and Green Living Technologies International partnered to bring the beautiful green walls to the NBC Experience Store in 30 Rockefeller Plaza for Green Week 2010.   You couldn’t have asked for greater exposure for public awareness – the  NBC Experience Store at 30 Rock is located on the corner of 49th Street between 5th and 6th Avenue and is across from the TODAY show studio.

After speaking with George Irwin of GLTi and Discovery High School, NBC hoped to “communicate green and the environment right here in the store.” And they certainly did just that –  NBC’s Experience Store “Window Farm” below was a temporary display during  “Green is Universal” week 2010 which ran from November 14-21.  The full length display windows had four individual MEWUs and  were  full of vegetable and herb plants all week long and all the produce was donated to four NYC schools for healthy lunches!

The permanent greenwall below is located up on the second floor and is visible from the first floor product display area of the NBC Experience Store.

I had the opportunity to see this lovely flowering greenwall last January, when Caroline Menetre, above, and I attended a GLT Certified Training in New York of about 100 people, including  30 students of whom several were from Discovery High School in the Bronx – the same team who had installed this greenwall – they were there to help the new student class (read her January 21, 2011 blog post  GLT in NYC: A Weekend of Training, Education, & Fun).

George Irwin, CEO of  GLTi and a former teacher himself, has been tirelessly promoting vertical living technologies to students across New York and has been working with educator Steve Ritz of Discovery High School and others to educate youth on the multiple benefits of sustainable crop production on greenroofs and greenwalls.

Led by George and classroom teacher  Steve Ritz of Discovery High School, the student team installed the 135 sf modular greenwall on November 13, 2010 in just a few hours.

This was done by the GLTi certified trainer graduating class from the Spring of 2010 (in collaboration with Janice Goodman and Cityscape), and these young people had already installed a greenroof over the summer in the Hamptons!

“We are providing opportunities and changing lives.”~ George Irwin

Here are some South Bronx figures, according to Ritz:  25% are unemployed; 40% are living in poverty; and the median income is $20,000.  Part Bronx activist and part youth advocate, teacher/administrator Steve Ritz’s students maintain a community garden and grow food in their classroom.

Steve  has been central to encouraging healthier eating habits as part of incorporating the GLTi Mobile Edible Wall Units or  MEWU into his  curriculum  plus actually empowering these students with the promise of green collar jobs.  The students actually run a profitable, community-based farmer’s market – in his class he and the kids have grown enough food to feed 450+ people!

“The Bronx is poised and ready to export our talent and diversity to lead the green revolution in ways that help us heal ourselves in a fully sustainable manner.” ~ Steve Ritz

Bronx Borough President  Ruben Diaz, Jr. is a great supporter of the efforts of Discovery High School, the proposed Hunts Point High School  for Sustainable Community Initiatives –  the career technical school focused on urban agriculture and “green” technology and jobs  slated to open in 2012 – and the overall green technology potential in the Bronx.

“Ritz wrote the proposal for the new school, which would operate in partnership with the Pratt Institute, Green Living Technologies, Mothers on the Move, the Cloud Institute for Sustainability Education and The Point Community Development Corp.” ~ The Hunts Point Express

Speaking of George Irwin, Steve Ritz, and Ruben Diaz, Jr., make sure you see them at the upcoming Greenroofs & Walls of the World™ Virtual Summit 2011 on September 27 and 28 where they are all sharing their experiences with New York greenroofs and greenwalls!

On Tuesday, September 27, watch Steve Ritz and Ruben Diaz, Jr. in the panel session “Greenroofs & Walls for Educational & Social Equity in the Bronx.” Moderated by Bronx businessman, Robert Bieder of  Westchester Square Plumbing Supply and joined by fellow panelists Jon Beuttler,  Project Manager in the Division of New Construction of the New York City Department of Housing Preservation and Development;  Jess Dannhauser,  Graham Windham‘s Senior Vice President for Program Performance and Planning;  Javier Lopez, Director of the New York City Strategic Alliance for Health,  and New York State Senator Gustavo Rivera, they will discuss the policies and educational initiatives underway in and of the Bronx that are making dramatic strides in the quality of life and opportunities for all residents with concentric benefits and ripples felt citywide, statewide and nationally.

And on Wednesday, September 28 see George Irwin as he leads the “Vertical Agriculture: A Global Movement Starts Locally, from Wall to Table”  panel session along with Tom Ferraro, Executive Director of Foodlink, and U.S. Congressman  Tom Reed.  This team will provide interactive conversation and commentary concerning the benefits of urban crops and the impact of education, economics and opportunity around local food production with green walls and roofs.

The NBC Experience Store Greenwall is a great example of a successful public/private partnership/relationship, and that “Green is Universal!”

Watch students and teachers from the Bronx’s Discovery School install the wall, and talk about the impact the program has had on their education below:


Did we miss something? We’d love to hear from you! Click here to see more information about this project in The International Greenroof & Greenwall Projects Database. See how you can submit yours here.

Love the Earth, Plant a Roof!

~ Linda V.

Boston GreenFest 2011 is Open!

August 18, 2011 at 6:03 pm

Boston GreenFest 2011 just opened at Boston City Hall at 5:00 pm!

Organized by Dr. Karen Weber and The Foundation for a Green Future, Inc., it’s the region’s largest environmental and multicultural festival.   Boston GreenFest celebrates the many ways we can create a better world by greening our lives and our communities.

Boston GreenFest 2011 HOURS:

Thursday, August 18: 5 pm – 9:30 pm:  Performers & Food –  Bill McKibben will be your EcoMC!
Friday, August 19: noon – 9:30 pm:  Exhibitors/Food/Vendors/Performers
Saturday, August 20: 11 am – 8 pm:  Exhibitors/Food/Vendors/Performers

The EcoParty continues every night at the  Hard Rock Café presented by Afrodesiacity!

The website says to stop by the EcoKids area for Radio Disney, TryOutToys and FIRST Lego Robots and that MassBike will run a Valet Bike Parking Service all day Friday & Saturday at the City Hall steps.


– Native American Drum Ceremony
– Green Fireworks and Light Show
– Transportation Tomorrow Today!
– Over 200 Exhibitors
– 200 Live Performances
– GreenSouleStage
– Great Escape with Alexanderia!
– EcoSalsa Fashion Show
– Jambalaya and Samba Dancers
– YMAA Kung Fu Demonstration
– NESA Gymnastic Presentation
– Tap Off with Boston Tap Company
– Green Entrepreneur Small Biz Forum
– EcoCafé, EcoGallery, EcoBazaar
– GreenFilmFest
– EcoFashion Pop-Up Shop
– One Gallon ChallengeTM
– EcoTimeTrail
– BPS EcoPhoto Contest
– EcoPoetry with Seitu
– Boston GreenFest Quilt
– Fun for Kids!

The Foundation for a Green Future, Inc. is dedicated to ensuring a green future for our planet and is proud to host this event.  We must teach, support and model sustainable ways to live for ourselves and our children. Green roofs are an important part of the solution.  This festival will go beyond our roofs.  It will get to the core of  GREEN SOLUTIONS for our  entire Boston Community.”

These are the EcoThemes for 2011:

Ң Green Roofs, Green CitiesӢ EcoDesign and Green BuildingsӢ Sustainable Business & InvestingӢ College ImpactӢ CommunicationsӢ Our Food & FarmsӢ WaterӢ EnergyӢ GreenTech,CleanTechӢ Our CommunityӢ Green HomesӢ Green LifestylesӢ TransportationӢ Walk & BikeӢ Health & WellnessӢ Healthy Minds & SpiritӢ Fitness & RecreationӢ EcoFashion & ShowsӢ International PerspectivesӢ Green PerspectivesӢ EcoKids

Speaking of “EcoThemes,” don’t miss one of our contributing editors, George Irwin – The Green Wall Editor –  of Green Living Technologies International (GLTi), who will be speaking about greenroofs and walls.  His lecture is part of an interactive hands on demonstration of an authentic  800 sf  greenroof installed on the Boston City Hall plaza as part of the weekend display.

The set up is part of an AIA lecture series by GLTi and they are offering AIA credit hours at no cost to attendees.  Visit the GLTi booth to learn all about vegetative roofs and living walls, and to pick up a free copy of‘s Greenroofs & Walls of the World™ 2011 Calendar (limited number)!

If you live in the Boston area, you’ll find lots of music, fun, and learning activities here for the whole family, and get to participate in a really clean and green  environment.  Visit  Boston GreenFest 2011 for more info.

~ Linda V.”™s “This Week in Review” on GreenroofsTV: August 12, 2011

August 13, 2011 at 2:43 pm

Each week you can expect to learn What’s New here on through our “This Week in Review” video.  Here’s the transcript from August 12, 2011 from our daughter, Anjuli – click on the photo below to see the video, or here.  Enjoy!

– Hello, I’m Anjuli Velazquez and welcome to This Week in Review for this week, August 12th, 2011 on GreenroofsTV.

Project of the Week

–   Our project of the week is the BCIT Green Roof Research Facility built in 2003 in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. The British Columbia Institute of Technology designed a dedicated Green Roof Research Facility with the support of regional government, organizations, industry associations and material suppliers to help address the major barriers to market penetration of green roofs in BC. The BCIT Green Roof Research Facility was constructed to evaluate green roof performance for stormwater source control and thermal efficiency.   It has three independent roof surfaces – one reference roof and two green roofs – each with their own weather poles to measure climatic parameters. In addition to researching stormwater source control and thermal performance of green roofs, the BCIT Centre for the Advancement of Green Roof Technology also conducts product performance testing, serves for demonstration, and offers research-based education and training across disciplines. The Centre is a leading sustainable initiative that will help re-define how buildings are designed, and how land and water can be more effectively managed.

–  To learn more about the BCIT Green Roof Research Facility, click on our project of the week photo on our homepage.

What’s New“

–   Due to a series of unexpected events, we have rescheduled our  Greenroofs & Walls of the World Virtual Summit 2011 to September 27th & 28th. We are very excited about our exceptional line-up of speakers and exhibitors and the extra time will ensure that the event will be a unique experience like no other. The extra time will be well worth it in the end to allow our speakers more time to prepare their presentations, people to be back from vacations, and for all of us to start spreading the word! So, our Early Bird Pre-Registration has also been extended and now you have until September 9th to pre-register and be entered to win an iPad2!

–  Advertiser Press Releases:

–   AIA Credits Available at Boston GreenFest for the GLTi “Green Roof Installations” Lecture with George Irwin.

–   Community College of Philadelphia Selects LiveRoof ® for Two New Green Roofs at its Main Campus.

–  Industry News

–   The Metropolitan St. Louis Sewer District (MSD) has agreed to make extensive improvements to its sewer systems & treatment plants, at an estimated cost of $4.7 billion over 23 years, to eliminate illegal overflows of untreated raw sewage, including basement backups; and to reduce pollution levels in urban rivers and streams.


–   Over at Sky Gardens, read Linda’s latest posts: “Date Change for the Greenroofs & Walls of the World Virtual Summit 2011,” TWIR for 8.5.11 and our GPW.

– “Upcoming Events“

–   August 16th: there is a Green Roofs for Healthy Cities – GRP Exam in Washington, DC.

–   August 16th-18th: is Ag Progress Days, Penn State’s College of Agricultural Sciences in Rock Springs, Pennsylvania.


–   And August 18th-20th: is Boston GreenFest 2011 in Boston, Massachusetts.


–   And check out our homepage for more Upcoming Events!

– “In the News“

–   Darah Hansen of The Vancouver Sun talks about “Car dealership buzzing with sweet activity.” In 2007, the 62,000-sq.-ft. Auto West BMW dealership in Richmond opened with more than $1 million in sustainable features, including a 16-meter-tall wind turbine, solar panels, a geothermal heating and cooling system, and a rooftop garden. Honey bees came two years later, following the rise of alarming news articles on the global collapse of honey bee colonies. The rooftop garden includes more than 3,500 bee-friendly plants, from lavender, wild strawberries and red currant to pink carpet roses, blueberries and apple blossoms. The project is also part of a study led by York University exploring how the urban environment affects the nesting habits of honey bees.

–   The Your News Now, web staff says “Downtown building gets new green roof.” The roof of the Monroe Building in downtown Syracuse now has a new environmentally-friendly roof with stormwater management capabilities projected to capture more than 90,000 gallons of water each year. The building’s owner applied for and received help from Onondaga County’s Green Improvement Fund, which is part of the county’s Save the Rain campaign. Its goal is to help reduce storm water pollution and clean up Onondaga Lake. The Green Improvement Fund covers several areas in the City of Syracuse.

– To learn more about these stories and new ones posted daily, go to our In the News or newslinks section of our website.

– Have something you think we should know about and post on our website? You can send us your green articles, videos and images to

– Stay up-to-date with what’s going on at by subscribing to our greenroofsTV channel on YouTube, following us on Twitter, liking us on Facebook and being a member of our network on LinkedIn.

– This has been This Week in Review for August 12th,  2011 on GreenroofsTV.  I’m Anjuli Velazquez and I’ll see you next week!

*This week’s episode is sponsored by The Greenroof Directory, brought to you by*

Did we miss something? We’d love to hear from you!

~ Linda V.”™s “This Week in Review” on GreenroofsTV: May 27th, 2011

May 31, 2011 at 7:01 pm

Each week you can expect to learn What’s New here on through our “This Week in Review” video.   Here’s the transcript from May 27, 2011 from our daughter, Anjuli –  click on the photo below to see the video, or here.   Enjoy!

– Hello, I’m Anjuli Velazquez and welcome to This Week in Review for May 27th, 2011, on    GreenroofsTV.

–  Project of the Week

–   Our project of the week is the Unilever Corporate Headquarters designed by HDR, Inc,  built in 2009 located in Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey.  The greenroof project is a 16,000 sq ft membrane roof retrofit over a 4-story office building, and the existing roofs needed to be replaced because they were leaking and showing signs of deterioration. Unilever desired a roofing system with an enjoyable appearance, considering its high level of visibility from the next door conference room space.  A new “˜Hydrotech‘ monolithic membrane system with an extensive “˜LiveRoof‘ pre-vegetated tray system was used.   A large variety of 15 types of Sedum and one Delosperma was planted.  To learn more about the Unilever Corporate Headquarters greenroof, click on our project of the week photo on our homepage.

What’s New“

–  Joblinks:   Robert Ebl Inc is looking for a part-time Intern in the western suburbs of Chicago, IL.

–  You can go to more information on this job and other Green Roof Job postings.

–  Advertiser Press Release:   Thanks partly to Tremco Roofing and Building Maintenance, Local School and Students of The Kenton County School District in Kentucky have benefited from the state’s Largest Solar Electric Installation.

LiveRoof and GreenFeathers, Inc. Announce Jenny Ruthven as the New Regional Sales Representative in the Pacific Northwest for the LiveRoof Hybrid Green Roof System.

–  Manufactured by VAST Enterprises, Firestone SkyPaver™ Composite Roof Pavers were Selected for Projects in Illinois, Nebraska and Ohio.

Alumasc Provides ZinCo Green Roof for Pioneering Eco-Spa.

–   Make sure to read George Irwin’s latest article “The Next Add-On Service for Green Roofs and Green Walls“ where you can read about his “take on the latest profitable service for landscape contractors, roof garden and green wall professionals and garden lovers alike.

–   Over at the Sky Gardens Blog, check out our new Guest Blog post by Matt Burlin, the Outreach Coordinator for Sustainable Stormwater Management with the City of Portland Environmental Services. He reminds us that June 1 is the deadline of the sixth round of the Ecoroof Incentive. Also see Linda’s latest posts for our GPW, the Unilever Corporate Headquarters, and last week’s “˜This Week in Review‘ on GreenroofsTV.

–   “Upcoming Events“

–   May 1st – July 31st: is the Integrated Habitat Design Competition (IHDC) 2011 in London, United Kingdom.

–   May 27th – 29th: is ROOF INDIA 2011 in Mumbai, India.

–   May 28th: is ARCSA’s 100-Level Workshop, Introduction to Rainwater Harvesting in Atlanta, Georgia.

–   Also May 28th: is the Call for Papers Deadline for the WGIN’s Internationals Green Technology Symposium 2011 in Indore, India.

–   May 28th – 30th: is Resilient Cities 2011 – World Congress on Cities & Adaptation to Climate Change in Bonn, Germany.

–   June 1st: is the Application deadline to submit projects to the City of Portland Green Roof Incentive program.

–   June 1st – 4th: is Growing Local – 19th Annual Congress for the New Urbanism (CNU) in Madison, Wisconsin.

And also June 1st – 4th: is the Green Roof for Heathy Cities – Green Roof Boot Camp in Chicago, Illinois.

–  For more Upcoming Events visit our homepage.

–   “In the News“

–  Lorna Thorpe of The Guardian talks about “British Land – offering urban shelter and habitats for insects and rare birds.” She says, “British Land won over the judges for its contribution to local biodiversity – urban habitats that provide shelter and foraging for insects, rare birds and plants in the heart of London.”     In one of the most effective ways to enhance biodiversity, British Land is setting the standard for biodiverse green roofs at many of its buildings; and over the past few years they have installed green roofs on all of its most recent office developments in central London, along with retrofitting them to some existing buildings.

–   Andrew Michler of says that “Green-Roofed Minneapolis Central Library is a Civic Lesson on Eco Design.” Minneapolis has one of the greenest libraries and the third largest library collection per capita in the US. The Minneapolis Central Library by Pelli Clark Pelli hosts a huge atrium that splits the building into layers of light-filled spaces to help encourage visitors to find a nice book and stay awhile. A series of greenroofs, advanced cooling and heating systems, and low-energy lights cuts the library’s energy use by nearly a third, teaching everyone by example exactly how deep green design benefits everyone.

–   To learn more about these stories and new ones posted daily, go to our  In the News or  newslinks section of our website.

–   Have something you think we should know about and post on our website?   You can send us your green articles, videos and images to

–   Stay up-to-date with what’s going on at by subscribing to our  greenroofsTV channel on YouTube, following us on  Twitter, liking us on  Facebook and being a member of our network on  LinkedIn.

–   This has been This Week in Review for  May 27,    2011 on GreenroofsTV.  I’m Anjuli Velazquez and I’ll see you next week!

*This week’s episode is sponsored by  The Greenroof Directory, brought to you by*

Did we miss something?   We’d love to hear from you!

~ Linda V.